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Philly killers stick to their guns

Discussion in 'Legal' started by Tall Man, Oct 18, 2005.

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  1. Tall Man

    Tall Man Member

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    http://www.officer.com/article/article.jsp?id=26477&siteSection=1

    Philly Killers Stick To Their Guns
    The Associated Press
    via Knight Ridder

    ROBERT EDWARDS became a marked man after riding his bicycle down the wrong West Philly street.

    Behind a KFC on Baltimore Avenue on Sept. 14, the 51-year-old stumbled upon the execution of alleged teen drug dealer Kevin Andrews.

    The young gunmen - who allegedly killed Andrews over ownership of a drug corner - told Edwards not to snitch, according to homicide insiders.

    But Edwards did the right thing.

    And when the killers found out that he had talked with police, they dragged him into a back lot and shot him in the head, homicide sources said.

    "I told you it would come to this," one of the thugs said.

    Now a teddy bear memorial sits in the alleyway on Ellsworth Street near 57th, where Edwards' body was found. The two alleged killers - ages 17 and 23 - are behind bars.

    "He seen too much and knew too much. And the young boys got him," a friend said.

    This merciless killing of a harmless man who mowed neighborhood lawns is a tragic example of the city's rising tide of homicides.

    With coldhearted drug dealers ruling the neighborhoods, guns available on every corner and residents too terrified to speak out, the number of bullets and bloodstains on Philly's streets climbs daily.

    At the end of last week, Philadelphia's 2005 toll of homicides stood at 297 - 13 percent higher than the 263 killings logged during the same period last year. If we stay on pace, the year's body count could be the highest in five years.

    The surge defies the trend in other parts of the country. New York and Baltimore have seen a dip in homicides this year compared with last, while Chicago has remained stable, according to police officials in those cities.

    "Looking at overall trends, trends in most of the major cities are down and have stayed down," said Patrick Carr, assistant professor of sociology at Rutgers University. "We're running counter to the trend."

    So why does Philly's death toll mount? And is there anything we can do about it?

    Crime experts are quick to point out that homicides fluctuate in all big cities from year to year. And Philly's numbers are still nowhere near the 10-year high in 1995 of 431 homicides.

    Still, experts blame the easy availability of guns as a significant factor in Philadelphia's bloodshed.

    About 80 percent of Philadelphia's homicides are by gun - one of the nation's highest gun-homicide rates. The national average is about 70 percent, according to FBI crime statistics.

    Experts say that Pennsylvania's lax gun laws mean that nearly anyone - even the most hardened criminals - can get his hands on a firearm.

    "We have the most lenient gun laws in the entire nation," said Police Commissioner Sylvester Johnson.

    There's no waiting limit to purchase a gun, no permits necessary to own one and no limit to the number of pistols you can buy. It's easy for people to buy guns and pass them along to felons without any penalty.

    It's not so easy in other cities. In New York state, for example, you need to get a permit and sit out the mandatory waiting period before you can buy a gun. Illinois also requires a permit and waiting period. And Maryland has a one-handgun-a-month restriction in addition to requiring permits and a waiting period.

    "We need to somehow control the flow of weapons in the city of Philadelphia," Carr said. "There seems to be a real reticence to do that at the state level."

    Edwards and Andrews both were killed by revolvers, a homicide insider said. Revolvers are popular street guns. Because revolvers hold six shots - fewer than most semiautomatic pistols - they require shooting skills. The gun culture considers them "man's guns," the homicide insider said.

    Mantua activist C.B. Kimmins notes that residents should be aware of who has guns in their neighborhood.

    "You all, as a community, have to get involved in looking around in your homes and in your street," he said. "Who has guns? Who uses these guns?"

    Another challenge - exemplified by Edwards' slaying - is the difficulty in getting witnesses to come forward. People in many neighborhoods are scared to go to the police with information about crimes because they fear retaliation.

    But Johnson stressed that if people don't step up, nothing will change.

    "If you shoot one time, you'll shoot again," Johnson said. "Everybody knows who did it. They do tell, but they don't go to court."

    Of course, Edwards never got the chance to go to court. He died a hero, trying to serve his neighborhood.

    "He's a nice guy," Edwards' friend said. "He cut grass, he did chores. He's a very special person."

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    Looks like I don't need to practice my marksmanship, since I prefer pistols over wheelguns. :rolleyes:

    TM
     
  2. K-Romulus

    K-Romulus Member

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    nice try

    Having my in-laws live in the Phil area lets me see the place close-up . . .there are some pretty scary places in that city, but what city with 1 million+ people doesn't have scary places?

    The attempt at lumping MD in with the "good gun control" states ignores the fact that there is a murder increase this year in this "free" state, and that the murders are often committed with firearms that are NOT in the nifty state police database . . .who would have guessed? :rolleyes:

    Edited to add:

    Last time I checked, Chicago and NYC were also having "armed crime" problems, despite their gun control schemes . . .
     
  3. Janitor

    Janitor Senior Member

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    Hmmm. Seems to me that the hardned criminals are the ones who will know how to get guns no matter how tough the gun laws might be. Lax laws have nothing to do with the bad guys being armed.

    Huh?

    Well this is different. We all know how effective waiting periods are on reducing crime. And I can easily see how making someone wait another month to buy their 'n'th handgun will help also. After all - who want's to use the old hardware?
     
  4. Crosshair

    Crosshair Member

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    Nice try, does not hold water

    What about Police Corruption, Political Corruption, High welfare population, Racial issues, unempoloyment? Any of these factors can and will scew the results. What about the states like Texas that have a large gun owning population and relativly low crime rates dispite things like drug smuggling, illegal immigrants, and other factors.
     
  5. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Member

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    At first glance, this sounds like a revisit of the old 'blaster vs light saber' argument. However, I think what the homicide insider is avoiding is the fact that revolvers don't leave shell casings lying about for evidence technicians to collect.

    Looks to me like the gangbangers and street thugs are watching CSI and paying attention.

    Pilgrim
     
  6. TheEgg

    TheEgg Member

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    Right out of the VPC/Brady Bunch play-book. Those evil guns, luring those peaceful drug dealers into a life of violence. Oh, Woo is me!!!!
     
  7. El Tejon

    El Tejon Member

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    Gee, it's hard to get a gun in New York City and Illinois. Wonder how that impacts NYC and Chicago's crime rate?:rolleyes:

    When one could buy guns through the mail, did Philly have the murder rate it does now?;) Could it possibly have something to do with the culture of nihilism that government promotes? Nah, of course not, it's the fault of guns (oh, and George Bush's fault).

    I like how revolvers are now the "weapon of choice" for criminals.:D But, but with all the "assault weapons" and "sniper rifles" flowing down the street, why use a revolver?:rolleyes:
     
  8. Colt

    Colt Member

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    Anyone that can flee Philly is doing so. 3% wage tax, if you live or work in the city. The mayor is too busy checking his office for FBI bugs and giving jobs to "the brothers and sisters, who are finally in charge" (his words, not mine) to seriously care about reducing crime.

    Last January, there were 8 shootings in one month. What was Street's answer? "Stop issuing CCW permits in the city, and make it illegal for anyone to carry in the city but the police." Right on, brother! All 8 shootings were committed with illegally-possessed guns, but instead of enforcing the existing laws, or actually having the police and/or courts do their jobs, let's take away the law-abiding citizens' ability to defend themselves. Brilliant!

    I avoid the city like the plague. But when I have to venture in for business (once in a blue moon), I am always, always, armed.
     
  9. Tall Man

    Tall Man Member

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    They run Philadelphia about as well as they run New Orleans.
     
  10. TallPine

    TallPine Member

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    another victim of the war on some drugs

    ever notice how liquour store owners aren't having shootouts with each other?
     
  11. jwmoore

    jwmoore Member

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    I think it's time to pass a bill to cede Filthydelphia to New Jersey. Then the city can have it's draconian gun laws, and Pennsylvania can become a free state again.

    ~W
     
  12. Colt

    Colt Member

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    Philly is the toilet down which most of PA's tax revenue is flushed. The only thing that bothers me more than Philly's mere existance is the fact that I'm funding the disaster, thanks to Gov Eddie Rendell, ex-Philly mayor, who can't seem to spend state funds on the city fast enough.
     
  13. greyhound

    greyhound Member

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    I think this nonsense comes from the lefty's "allowing people to carry guns promotes the thought that violence is the answer". Where they fail to connect the dots, I think, is the difference between law abiding folks and gang bangers.

    Plus, for someone with an anti-CCW ax to grind, they might use even the flimsiest excuse to puch their agenda.
     
  14. thorn726

    thorn726 Member

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    this seems to be the way ebveryone deals with it.

    anyone else feel like maybe the police are too lazy to enforce laws so they jsut try and write laws to avoid working?
     
  15. oldfart

    oldfart Member

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    The thing that I noticed was the double reference to "experts," who then quote the party line regarding those evil guns.
    Why are they experts? Who, besides the Brady Bunch and VPC, rely on them for their "expert" opinions? I wouldn't know any of them from Adam's off ox and wouldn't recognise them if they spit out their mom's teat and ran out from under the porch to bite me.
     
  16. gunsmith

    gunsmith member

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    Revolvers!

    you maen they're not using .50 cal sniper rifles? No AR15 "machine guns"?

    revolvers don't leave evidence behind (spent shells)
    thats why they use em!
     
  17. Dead

    Dead Member

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    If that is true there are MANY people I know what WOULD be on the news as a "mass murderer", to date not one person I know has ever committed a violent act with a gun or otherwise. The tool that is used is NOT important, but WHY the acts were committed. I wonder what made these people commit crimes? Could it be that because there is a sub-culture in the city that leads people into lives of crime, as they see no other means to earn a living than selling illegal drugs, or committing other crimes to get easy money??

    Guns have nothing to do with it, prohibition had the same effect, without it the gangs, and mobsters would not have "risen to power" the way they did while engaging the manufacter/sale of illegal alcohol.
     
  18. spocahp anar

    spocahp anar Member

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    Why is it always the availability of guns as the root cause, When people realize that crime is a social problem and agree to deal with it then they can fix it.
     
  19. spocahp anar

    spocahp anar Member

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    TP can I borrow this?
     
  20. Monkeyleg

    Monkeyleg Member

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    "It's easy for people to buy guns and pass them along to felons without any penalty."

    Really? Does this mean that there's no federal penalty in Philly for straw purchases?
     
  21. Standing Wolf

    Standing Wolf Member in memoriam

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    It's rarely much of a challenge to find a self-declared "expert" to blame the guns and/or gun laws and call for further infringements of the Second Amendment civil rights of the law-abiding.

    Very well said!
     
  22. MudPuppy

    MudPuppy Member

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    You get the government you vote for, you get the safety you provide for yourself.

    Too scared/lazy/tired/ignorant/whatever to fix it? Well, that sucks for you, you're now the prey.
     
  23. Grey54956

    Grey54956 Member

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    Just once, I want to read something like this:

    "Still, experts blame the easy availability of drugs and street corners as a significant factor in Philadelphia's bloodshed."

    But, noooooo, it's the guns.:confused:

    Seriously, it isn't that there are too many guns; its that there aren't enough. When the guy snitched, where was his gun for defense of life and limb. Oh, that's right, he probably thought the cops were going to protect him.
     
  24. Old Fuff

    Old Fuff Member

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    They have to blame the guns .... :eek:

    If it isn't the gun's fault then it has to be something else. :scrutiny:

    That's when the finger pointing stops and the chickens come home to roost. :banghead:
     
  25. Art Eatman

    Art Eatman Administrator Staff Member

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    thorn726 asks, "anyone else feel like maybe the police are too lazy to enforce laws so they jsut try and write laws to avoid working?"

    No. First off, police don't write laws. Okay? They don't write laws, pass laws, sign laws into effect. No. They really don't.

    Next: Commonly, the least-funded of all city services, or truly-needed city services, is the police department. As a society, nationwide, we don't want to pay enough taxes to have really good police departments. And, we let our local officials divert the needed tax monies to social-service purposes instead of the basics. And all the while we whine that taxes are too high, instead of electing people who will prioritize spending based upon need instead of "compassion".

    And so between parades, funerals, parking tickets, burglary reports and other paperwork, there are few cops to actively patrol high-crime neighborhoods on a regular basis. And, commonly, residents of those neighborhoods will complain to the newsies of over-policing. These complaints are then followed by high-visibility press conferences by people such as Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton.

    Once again, "We have met the enemy, and he is us."

    :), Art
     
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